October 11, 1975: George McCrae, Stretch, Bud Flanagan, Paul Melba, Maxine Nightingale

New Spins

GEORGE MCCRAE: ‘I Ain’t Lyin’’ / ‘You Treat Me Good’ (Jay Boy BOY 105)
The rhythm section that rules the world does its thing as George soars and cut-price brass battles through the dominating drumkit. So simple, so effective. Cooled-out though still busy beat on the flip.

STRETCH: ‘Why Did You Do It’ (Anchor ANC 1021)
Heartily-compressed drum beats and Doobie-type guitar jiggling back gruff Elmer Cantry on a superbly-produced semi-slow thudder that’s kinda like Bad Company meeting the Ides of March. Sounds like a smash.

BUD FLANAGAN: ‘Who Do You Think You’re Kidding Mr. Hitler?’ (Pye 7N 45530)
I goofed by playing this (the Dad’s Army theme) once at a gig where evidently the German ambassador was a guest! Oh well, the point being that I use it all the time, especially as part of a routine where it leads into Glen Miller’s ‘In The Mood’. Great jolly MOR.

PAUL MELBA: ‘You’re The Cream In My Coffee’ (Pye 7N 45537)
Silliness, ideal for certain MOR gigs, hidden on the flip of an unsuccessful ‘Misty’-fication of ‘Tenderly’.

MAXINE NIGHTINGALE: ‘Right Back Where We Started From’ (UA UP 36015) (Billboard chart debut 4/3/76)
Here comes Pierre “Fool” Tubbs again, giving Al Matthews’s back-up singer an amazingly infectious clapalong bouncy beat and a dead simple catchy tune. She looks great, too!

FREDDIE WATERS: ‘Kung Fu And You Too’ (Mint CHEW 2)
Punchy soul thumper that should become a fave, even though crazily it’s buried as flip to an Al Green copy called ‘Groovin’ On My Baby’s Love’.

LABELLE: ‘Messin’ With My Mind’ (Epic EPC 3624) (mentioned in Billboard column 8/30/75, Billboard chart debut 9/6/75)
Less direct at first than ‘Lady Marmalade’, this chunky bouncer is a comer even so, and should get soul folk jumping.

HUBERT LAWS: ‘The Chicago Theme (Love Loop)’ (CTI CT SP 001) (mentioned in Billboard column 5/17/75, Billboard chart debut 6/7/75)
Flautist Laws goes MFSB on this classy smooth hustler, which seems themed for a TV cop show but isn’t. Hardly jazz, though kinda nice!

SALSOUL ORCHESTRA: ‘Salsoul Hustle’ (Epic EPC 3672) (mentioned in Billboard column 8/9/75, Billboard chart debut 8/16/75)
Vince Montana taps his vibes and produces the Philly fellas under yet another name as they latch onto salsa. Their jazzily-developing slick rhythm rattler’s a bit tame at first before the 6:41 disco version gets down to really cook.

SEVEN SEAS: ‘Super Jaws’ (Jay Boy 98) (Billboard chart debut 9/13/75)
Funky wah-wah instrumental by Little Beaver and the “other” band at TK, it’s the first of all the Jaws spinoffs to be a US hit.

ULTRAFUNK: ‘Sting Your Jaws’ (Parts 1 & 2) (Contempo CS 2071)
And another – although there’s nothing to let you know it on this livelier and funkier instrumental. Incidentally, the actual Jaws movie theme by John Williams (US MCA) is an awesomely sinister piece of pseudo-classical music, and not a dancer.

FIREFLY: ‘Hey There Little Firefly’ (Parts 1 & 2) (A&M AMS 7195) (Billboard chart debut 10/25/75)
If you love Young-Holt’s soulful strut you’ll go for this, as it’s a vocal version with new words!

CLIFF BENNETT & THE REBEL ROUSERS: ‘Got To Get You Into My Life’ (Alaska ALS 1013)
Re-issue (in stereo) of the 1966 brassy Beatles hit, fresh enough to go well today.

Import Picks

UNDISPUTED TRUTH: ‘Higher Than High’ / ‘Spaced Out’ (Gordy G7145F) (Billboard chart debut 10/25/75)
Exciting “boom-boom-chicka-chicka-boom” opening and wildly abandoned tearaway construction make the topside a dancer’s delight, while the flip starts with bedroom noises before becoming a slinkily-chanted beefy thruster. Few things are sexier than that intro!

PAT LUNDI: ‘Party Music’ (Vigor VI 1723) (Billboard chart debut 8/2/75)
Disco side of this great hustler is 5:15 of instrumental bliss, like a poppier, lighter version of ‘Dreaming A Dream’. Strings scrape, rhythms clatter, everything swirls around and – the clincher for me – the guitar plays a lovely old-fashioned ‘Tighten Up’ lick.

SOUL SEARCHERS: ‘Boogie Up The Nation’ (Polydor PD 14277) (mentioned in Billboard column 7/5/75)
Somber synthetics and dramatic brass intro this huskily-sung bumpy rhythm dancer, which gets down and does it most effectively.

MIKE POST: ‘Manhattan Spiritual’ (MGM M14829)
While we’ve been resurrecting his old ‘Rhino’, Mike’s been hot Stateside with ‘Rockford Files’ – to which this big-sounding revival of Reg Owen’s 1959 hit instrumental is the follow-up. Lotsa brass, wheeling synthetics, richly resonant rhythm.

UK Disco Top 20 – October 11, 1975

01 03 David Essex – Hold Me Close – CBS
02 12 Drifters – There Goes My First Love – Bell
03 01 5000 Volts – I’m On Fire – Philips
04 04 Fatback Band – Yum Yum (Gimme Some) – Polydor
05 02 KC & The Sunshine Band – That’s The Way (I Like It) – Jay Boy
06 13 Rod Stewart – Sailing – Warner Bros.
07 NE Four Seasons – Who Loves You – Warner Bros.
08 08 Natalie Cole – This Will Be – Capitol
09 20 Dee Clark – Ride A Wild Horse – Chelsea
10 05 Leo Sayer – Moonlighting – Chrysalis
11 NE Jonathan King – Una Paloma Blanca – UK
12 07 People’s Choice – Do It Anyway You Wanna – Philadelphia Int’l
13 09 Jimmy Bo Horne – Gimme Some – RCA
14 19 Bob Marley & The Wailers – No Woman, No Cry – Island
15 NE Chi-Lites – It’s Time For Love – Brunswick
16 18 Crown Heights Affair – Dreaming A Dream – Polydor
17 14 B.T. Express – Give It What You Got – EMI
18 NE Faith, Hope & Charity – To Each His Own – RCA
19 RE Leroy Brown – One Woman Man – EMI
20 06 Al Matthews – Fool – CBS
NE = new entry; RE = re-entry

Appeared in Billboard:
#3 (mentioned in Billboard column 10/25/75, Billboard chart debut 12/6/75)
#4 (Billboard chart debut 7/12/75)
#5 (mentioned in Billboard column 7/26/75, Billboard chart debut 9/13/75)
#7 (Billboard chart debut 8/23/75)
#8 (Billboard chart debut 9/13/75)
#12 (mentioned in Billboard column 6/14/75, Billboard chart debut 7/5/75)
#13 (Billboard chart debut 7/12/75)
#16 (mentioned in Billboard column 5/31/75, Billboard chart debut 6/7/75)
#17 (mentioned in Billboard column 7/12/75, Billboard chart debut 8/2/75)
#18 (Billboard chart debut 7/19/75)

Songs mentioned in “DJ Hotline”:

ROXY MUSIC: ‘Love Is The Drug’ (Island)
SILVER CONVENTION: ‘Fly Robin Fly’ / ‘I Like It’ (Magnet) (mentioned in Billboard column 7/19/75, Billboard chart debut 8/2/75)
DOOLEY SILVERSPOON: ‘As Long As You Know (Who You Are)’ (Seville)
BLACK ROCK: ‘New York City Bump’ (Seville) (mentioned in Billboard column 5/17/75, Billboard chart debut 9/20/75)
ELEVENTH HOUR: ‘Hollywood Hot’ (20th Century) (mentioned in Billboard column 7/5, Billboard chart debut 7/26/75)
JACK ASHFORD & THE SOUND OF NEW DETROIT: ‘Do The Choo-Choo’ (London) (Billboard chart debut 7/5/75)
TRAMMPS: ‘Hold Back The Night’ (Buddah) (Billboard chart debut 6/21/75)
BROTHERS: ‘Are You Ready For This’ (RCA – US import) (mentioned in Billboard column 4/5/75, Billboard chart debut 4/12/75)
MFSB: ‘Let’s Go Disco’ (Philadelphia Int’l) (mentioned in Billboard column 5/3/75)
SPEEDY KEEN: ‘Bad Boys Cold Hand Warm Gun’ (Island)
TODD RUNDGREN: ‘Real Man’ (Bearsville)
MIKE HARPER: ‘I’m Crying’ (Retreat)
CLARENCE REID: ‘See Through’ (Atco – US import)
JAMES BROWN: ‘Papa’s Got A Brand New Bag ‘75’ (Polydor – US import)
SOUTH SIDE COALITION: ‘Get Off Your Seat And Jam’ (Brown Dog – US import)
SUSAN MAUGHAN: ‘Bobby’s Girl’ (Philips)
PRINCE BUSTER: ‘Al Capone’ (Blue Beat)

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